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Birdwatcher - The Darkest Hour Is Just Before Dawn

  by Peter Liddle

published: 20 / 1 / 2002



Birdwatcher - The Darkest Hour Is Just Before Dawn
Label: Talitres
Format: CD

intro

"The sound of someone who's awake when they should have been asleep for the last 10 hours, of unwanted sound on a weary brain refusing to go to sleep." Experimental and demanding, but ultimately rewarding debut from NYC project.


A lot of this album is pretty terrifying. It's quiet. Too quiet. The worrying thing is how much of it sounds like the sounds you would hear at half four in the morning through headphones when you've given up on sleep for the uneasy prospect of seeing in the next day instead. It's got a tired feel, but at the same time it's anxious to get somewhere, and it's something that demands you listen, because you have no choice but to stay awake. Birdwatcher started as a 4-track solo project, but now involves other musicians, though it's hard to tell who they are listening to the songs on this. The sound of the vocals obscure the dainty instrumentals. It's a question of perspective, though, as it might be by design that the vocals sound breathless and overdrawn while the keyboards and guitars are minimillay used. An uninterested listener would be tested by this album. The sounds are often too quiet to force you to listen. There are a lot of scratchy sounds also but the overall effect of all this is a convincing edge of experimentalism and rawness relating to the theme of dawn. It's the sound of someone who's awake when they should have been asleep for the last 10 hours, of unwanted sound on a weary brain refusing to go to sleep. The album drifts in and out of conciousness, in and out of styles and sounds and always moving on from the predicted course. There are some straightforward songs, namely "The Hunt" and "Little Birdy", which sound like the centre pieces of the album, the most lucid parts of something more eerie. It's hard to explain the overall effect of this album, though strangely you don't find yourself contemplating that as much as what a rolling stones cover is doing at the end. However, "No Expectations" works as the end to the album following the strange, quiet "three weeks". The Birdwatcher has created something that demands attention, and that the listener follows its themes of darkness and dawn, to be understood. It tells you to stay awake, until the final sleepy slide guitar permits you to rest.



Track Listing:-
1 Cutting Rope
2 First Bright Light
3 Bound To Collide
4 Dawn
5 Little Birdy
6 The Hunt
7 Three Weeks
8 No Expectations


Label Links:-
http://www.talitres.com/en/
https://www.facebook.com/talitres.rds
https://twitter.com/talitres
https://instagram.com/talitres/



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